As rents soar, more small businesses turn to loan program to buy property


Facing soaring rents and property prices, hundreds of small businesses across the Bay Area have turned to a federal loan program in the last few years to keep a foothold in one of the nation’s most expensive real estate markets.

The U.S. Small Business Administration and its nonprofit partners help businesses across the country purchase property. But the impact of the loans they disperse is particularly acute in the Bay Area, where high and sometimes unpredictable overhead costs have forced long-time restaurants to shutter, prompted shop owners to close up and move, and made the already complicated job of expanding a business even more difficult.